Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Fun with gourds

You all can rest assured that if there were anything DNA to talk about you'd be seeing the 'Hot Now' sign.    It seems that the U.S. President, the U.S. Congress and the Iraqi Parliament aren't the only ones taking August for a vacation.

I told you earlier that last week I'd not be taking an instrument class but instead would be building a gourd banjo.    Well, here goes.    First you start with some gourds -
and a neck blank.    This one's mahogany.    Maple was also available -
first, you cut out the neck blank -
and shape it -
and oil it-
Then, cut the top off your gourd -
and cut your holes for the neck and the sound hole -
and stretch wet goatskin over it, tacking it -
Prepare your tuning pegs and tailpiece -
and get everythhing ready for assembly -
Then just string it up to pull it all together -

Did I make any mistakes?    Yep.    If you look closely at this 5th string peg photo you can see two other moon-shaped places where I drilled the hole at the wrong angle - twice! - and had to plug and redrill it -
Here's mine just before stringing it up -
And here are some examples of others' -


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